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POEM / Poem With a Stolen Line / Mary Ann Honaker


My wolf, how long you were fangs to me,
saliva-spangled, quivering oblivion lip, mouth's pink gate.
How long hungry throat. My life

in your gullet.  Your yellowed claws
like syringes for blood. You could do nothing
if not belly in dirt, in leaves,

crouching with a snarl, cornered.
I did not want your copper-scented nights.
I did not want your knife-edge stars.

My wolf, I have your four long legs
but I have not learned to run.  My wolf,
some scents are missing, in the tapestry

they weave they have left holes,
the colors gone awry, the scene told
indecipherable. Figures gesture

toward empty space. My wolf,
your appetites rumble within my abdomen,
and one day desire will not be

a form of wickedness.[1]  Draw near,
my wolf, draw near. My hand
reaches for your pine-prickled coat, 

you are stomach of my stomach, we are pack-mates, 
we are one bounding hunger in darkness,
we are one set of salt-white teeth.

[1]          “One day desire will not be a form of wickedness.” is a line taken from Terrance Hayes' poem “Shakur.”

Mary Ann Honaker is the author of It Will Happen Like This (YesNo Press, 2015). Her poems have appeared in 2 Bridges, The Dudley Review, Euphony, Juked, Off the Coast, Van Gogh’s Ear, The Lake, and elsewhere. Mary Ann holds a BA in philosophy from West Virginia University, a master of theological studies degree from Harvard Divinity School, and an MFA in creative writing from Lesley University. She currently lives in Beckley, West Virginia.